The Railview proposal to NYCHA addresses the needs of the community with new affordable housing in a highly sustainable building, with ground floor services provided by Phipps. Railview will be a counterpoint to the existing NYCHA housing in the Morrisania neighborhood and a complement to the corner site facing Railroad Park. Affordable housing design in a light, sophisticated form will take advantage of the sloping site, exposed site, adjacency to the park and low-scale neighboring buildings. With lush landscaped open spaces, glazed ground floor community room, lobby and supportive offices, the development will inspire and support a natural enlivening of the neighborhood.
Addressing the community’s request for a new sustainable development, Railview is designed to meet Passive House and Enterprise Green Communities (2015) Certifications. The design includes building features that are a combination high performance building systems and the tightest building envelope ensuring the required reduction of energy use for Passive House. Variable refrigerant flow (VRF) systems, energy recovery ventilators (ERVs), Energy Star appliances and ultra-high efficiency LED lighting and low-flow showerheads, faucet aerators, and low-flush toilets will be featured in order to reduce building energy consumption. A three part sustane of power generation and storage will provide alternative sources of energy through a cogeneration unit (CHP), a solar photovoltaic (PV) system and an energy storage system (ESS) package with that will store the power produced by the solar PV systems and discharging it at times of peak electrical demand. In addition stairs and elevator lobbies are designed to maximize natural light and are integrated in every floor, and multiple landscaped spaces will ensure year round access to natural elements in this urban community.
In an effort to offset the presence of a new – albeit healthy, high-performance – building and to take full advantage of its location across from a park, the Railview design incorporates multiple landscaped areas
on different floors throughout the building. The largest, a rear yard is equipped for active and passive use throughout the year –including a yoga deck, pocket/nook seating, play structures, shade trees, flexible furniture, and soil mounding along the back screen to provide additional buffering from rail platform edge. The courtyard landscape includes permeable pavers, bioswales with engineered soils, paired with facultative hydrophitic plant species, native perennials, shrubs, vines, and groundcovers contributing to the project’s resiliency. A terrace overlooking Railroad Park has space for urban gardens and provides a green vista from the 8th floor gym and community room. Greening of the space at the ground floor setbacks act as noise, and visual barriers for community space, the lobby and supportive offices.